For those looking for an affordable, good-quality, easy-to-setup video-conferencing solution.
Small businesses that want an on-demand video conferencing solution will like Logitech's ConferenceCam Connect. This slim-line baton has everything needed to set up instant voice and video calls and at only 766g, it's light enough to be transported off-site so you can impress your clients.
The Connect may be small but it's no video lightweight as the upper aluminium half houses a classy Zeiss 3 megapixel lens. Audio features are equally good: below the lens are dual omni-directional microphones while 360-degree speakers lurk behind the lower fabric-sheathed section with both claiming a 12-foot range.
The Connect is designed for huddle rooms with up to six people and its wide 90-degree field of view provides good coverage. Its auto-focus worked fine during testing and the 4X digital zoom retains good levels of clarity at the maximum range.
The included keypad provides remote pan, tilt and zoom controls plus buttons for volume, mute and making or ending voice calls. When not in use, it slots neatly into the camera recess to protect the lens.
The Connect comes with an external power supply but you may not need it as its internal battery can be charged via its USB 2 port. The battery also provides enough juice for 15 hours of voice calls and 3 hours of video.
The upper panel has a touch power button and three more round the edge for selecting screen mirroring, Bluetooth and video conferencing modes. They worked fine but be careful picking the Connect up as we found it too easy to accidentally swap modes.
The HDMI port at the back is used to connect a high-definition TV or monitor so you can share your mobile device screen over a wireless connection. It supports the Miracast protocol so supports Android 4.3 and Windows 8.1 upwards but not Apple devices.
We tested this with an Iiyama 27in HD monitor and after linking it to the Connect, it displayed a screen showing that mirroring was ready. From our Lumia 640 Windows 10 mobile, we used the 'Connect to a wireless display' option whereupon it received an IP address from the Connect and worked perfectly.
We installed the Connect on a Windows 10 host which loaded the required drivers the instant we connected it. Logitech provides an updated Camera Settings utility allowing us to view the camera feed to aid positioning, run diagnostics and tweak contrast, brightness and colour balance.
Skype users should install Logitech's free Windows plug-in to enable the call accept and end buttons on the remote handset. Quick Skype meetings were easy to set up as it picked up the camera the moment it was plugged in and participants rated video and audio quality highly.
Cisco WebEx was just as easy as it grabbed the camera when the meeting started, placed the viewing window on the right and allowed the host and participants to switch to full-screen mode and back again. As with Skype, our meeting members thought the video quality was very impressive and had no problems hearing us clearly.
Bluetooth connections are equally pain-free; just press the button on the lid until the blue light in the base starts flashing. We paired our Lumia 640 mobile and iPad and found general sound quality - even at full volume – to be very clear and loud enough to be heard at the other end of our 6.5 metre long meeting room.